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Rape and Sexual Assault Attorney in New York City

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Rape and sexual assault in New York City can happen anywhere, to anyone, at any time. It could happen to a man or a woman in the middle of the day or late at night. It can occur in your home, in a public location, or in a back alley of a dark street. What is important is that it occurs, unfortunately, all too often. While you may choose to press criminal charges, you also have the right to sue your assailant in civil court for the damages you suffered at their forceful hands. You do not need to win your criminal court case to file in civil court or even win in civil court. For the past 25 years, the attorneys at Derek Smith Law Group have helped rape and sexual assault victims get the compensation and justice they so rightly deserve.

What Is a Civil Claim for Rape and Sexual Assault in New York City?

It is no secret that rape and sexual assault in New York City is a criminal act. As a victim, your first priority (beyond allowing yourself to heal emotionally and physically) is to catch the bad guy and make him or her pay for the crime. So, you file a police report and go through the entire process so the police can do their job and take one more rapist or sexual assailant off the streets and throw him or her in jail.

However, once you have filed criminal charges, you have the right to sue your assailant and even the property manager of where the rape or sexual assault occurred in civil court in New York City. You do NOT need to win your criminal case to sue or win your civil case. Your civil court claim can help you receive money for the medical issues involved, therapies needed, for the negligence, the property manager may have conducted, and for the emotional distress you incurred. In other words, the criminal action will make sure the rapist is off the streets and behind bars. The civil action will help make you whole again.

Why Would a Victim Sue the Property Manager for a Rape or Sexual Assault in New York City?

A property manager may have a part to do with a rape or sexual assault because he or she ignored issues that could cause a dangerous environment for people walking through the area or living and working in the building. This is called premises liability. Rapes and sexual assault can occur anywhere, however, many times the rapist is looking for a place that he or she can complete the act without getting noticed. If a building manager neglects to fix parking lot lights he knows are dangerous or install locks that protect people working or living in the building at night, he or she can be liable under premises liability. You can sue the property manager because you may not have been raped or sexually assaulted if these issues were corrected.

Who Else May be Included in a Rape or Sexual Assault Lawsuit in New York City?

Of course, the person who rapes you or sexually assaulted you can be sued in civil court for damages. However, you may be able to add other defendants to your lawsuit. If you were raped at work, your employer can be added to the lawsuit. If you were raped as a client or customer of a business by an employee of that business, the employer may be able to be sued because it occurred during business hours and the employee was on the clock. In addition, if your attacker worked with a therapist or doctor that knew this could occur and did nothing to prevent it, such as reporting the concerns to the proper authorities, the therapist or doctor could be added to your lawsuit.

What Are Some Examples of Rape or Sexual Assault Situations in New York City?

Rape or sexual assault can occur anywhere and anytime. However, some people do not know they have a case for rape or sexual assault because they do not know the laws. Even if you eventually consent, if you were coerced or forcibly held against your will until you offered this consent, you may have a case for rape. Here are some examples of rape and sexual assault situations:

  • Date rape
  • Rape by a co-worker or employer
  • Unwanted sexual contact or any kind
  • A person watching you without your knowledge (voyeurism)
  • Unwanted exposure to pornography
  • A person flashes you
  • A person gives you alcohol and/or drugs and then has sex with you
  • Having sex with or sexually touching a person who is asleep or unconscious
  • Pressuring a person to have sex until he or she consents
  • Unwanted sexual contact by an unknown person
  • Violent sexual contact
  • A teacher or camp counselor having sex with an underage student or camper
  • Unwanted sexual contact from a medical provider
  • Blackmailing a person by forcing them to have sex
What Is the Statute of Limitations to File a Civil Case for Rape and Sexual Assault in New York City?

In order to file a claim for rape or sexual assault in New York City, there is a time limit, depending on your claim. First, and most importantly, you do not need to win your criminal sexual assault or rape trial to sue or win your civil sexual assault or rape case in New York City. A rapist can be found not guilty in criminal court and still owe you thousands or more dollars in civil court.

If you wish to seek a premises liability claim, you have 3 years from the date of the attack to file a complaint in civil court. If you wish to bring a civil suit against the attacker, the time limit is 5 years from the date of the assault.

What Remedies Are Available in Civil Court for a Rape or Sexual Assault Claim in New York City?

Criminal court will hopefully bring justice by forcing the attacker or rapist to pay for his or her crimes with jail time and restitution. However, the civil court is about making him or her and others pay for their actions with monetary rewards. The civil court may grant the following relief for your rape or sexual assault claim.

  • Reimbursement of medical expenses
  • Reimbursement for psychiatric care
  • Lost wages
  • Pain and suffering
  • Emotional Distress
  • Punitive damages
A Few Resources to Help Deal with the Aftermath of Rape or Sexual Assault

If you are the victim of rape or sexual abuse, some organizations can help you cope and direct you to therapists and other groups meant to help you heal. Here are a few resources available.

  1. RAINN. The Rape, Abuse, and Incest National Network is the largest organization in the US helping victims of sexual assault. Along with their National Sexual Assault Hotline, RAINN provides access to thousands of sexual assault providers throughout the US.
  2. 1in6. This organization helps men who have been sexually abused thought their online helpline, online support groups, trainings, and the Bristlecone Project which helps them by showing videos, portraits, and written stories of male sexual abuse survivors.
  3. Safe Horizon. Safe Horizon helps victims of rape and sexual assault fin the resources they need to begin to heal. The organization offers hotlines, community programs, a counseling center, and Project SAFE lock replacement which helps you feel safe in your home.
Contact Our Experienced Rape and Domestic Violence Attorneys In New York City for Your Free Consultation

As a victim of rape and sexual assault, you deserve justice. No person should ever have their body touched or attacked without their permission. While the criminal justice system can help ensure this attacker never hurts another person, you have a right for the civil courts to help make you whole once again. If you are the victim of rape or sexual assault, the experienced attorneys at the Derek Smith Law Group in New York City can help. Contact us at (212) 587-0760 for a free consultation. We do not collect any money until you win your case.

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